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RBS boss: Profits 'show recovery'

The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), which is 81% government owned, has posted profits before tax of £826m for the first quarter of this year.

That is compared to a loss of £1.5bn for the same period in 2012.

RBS became 81% state-owned after the Edinburgh-based bank was bailed out in the wake of the 2008 global financial crisis with £45.5bn of taxpayers' money: the world's biggest banking bailout.

Speaking to the Today programme's Evan Davis, Stephen Hester, chief executive of the RBS Group, said that believes that this quarter's profits is the first step to RBS's recovery: "We expect to substantially complete the bank's restructuring phase during 2014."

Mr Hester also said RBS was open to suggestions over the bank's assets, adding: "Of course, if a fairy godmother wants to take problems away from RBS, why wouldn't we like that?"

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4's Today programme on Friday 3 May 2013.

  • 03 May 2013
  • From the section UK